Vessel runs aground in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary

KEY WEST, Fla. – The 49-foot pleasure craft LISERN II ran aground Sunday on Grecian Rocks in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.

Personnel from Coast Guard Station Islamorada, Fla., Tow Boat U.S., Sea Tow, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) responded to the vessel grounding.

The Coast Guard and Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (FKNMS) are working to mitigate any possible environmental impacts to the reefs.

“The vessel ran aground within the Grecian Rocks Sanctuary Preservation Area,” said Karrie Carnes, Communications Coordinator for FKNMS. “Staff of the Sanctuary’s Damage Assessment and Restoration team visited the grounding site Monday and will return to conduct a full assessment once the vessel has been removed.”

The Coast Guard has opened the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund to respond to this incident. The Coast Guard is also working closely with FKNMS, NOAA, FWC and Florida Department of Environmental Protection to remove approximately 900 gallons of diesel fuel reported to be on the vessel.

Poor on-scene weather conditions and the location of the vessel did not allow response today. Response efforts have been delayed until on-scene weather conditions improve.

The cause of the grounding is under investigation.

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